Sunday, January 17, 2010

Recap of the 2010 Golden Globes

The 67th Annual Golden Globe Awards took place tonight, and while I was pleased with the overall telecast, I was disappointed with many of the winners that the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) felt the need to honor. Before I get into specifics, let me just start off by saying that I really enjoyed watching Ricky Gervais host this thing. He provided an edge that the show desperately needed, and although I doubt we'll see him again, I think he got in most of the shots he wanted to.

Another highlight of the evening was seeing Martin Scorsese presented with the Cecil B. DeMille Award. His fantastic speech was preceded by a montage of his most memorable films as well as gracious introductions from two of his most prized actors, Robert De Niro and Leonardo DiCaprio. Scorsese's speech really was something. His passion for filmmaking -- and film preserving -- has never been more evident.

Before I delve into my comments on the motion picture awards, there is one thing I would like to single out from the television awards, and that is the wins of Michael C. Hall and John Lithgow for their respective performances in Season 4 of Showtime's "Dexter". It is a brilliant show, and although I would have loved to see it also take Best Drama from "Mad Men", I am perfectly content with the two acting wins. Hall, as I'm sure most of you have heard by now, has been privately battling Hodgkin's lymphoma, and based on this article and several others I've read, he seems to be on his way to successfully overcoming the disease. The 38-year-old actor is perfect in the title role of this series, and seeing him -- as well as Lithgow -- receive their awards to standing ovations was perhaps the highlight of the night for me.

As far as my predictions go for the film portion of the Globes, I was right in the middle with a 7 out of 14, and you can check out my full predictions here. The acting categories really threw me for a spin. While most people believe Jeff Bridges will take home the Oscar in early March, George Clooney seemed to take over as the HFPA favorite over the past couple weeks. Nevertheless, Bridges ended up receiving the Best Actor Award for Crazy Heart to a standing ovation, and although I'm still curious as to why Clooney didn't win, Bridges is looking like even more of a lock for his first Oscar. 

In the Best Actress categories, I think everyone on the planet picked Meryl Streep for Julie & Julia, and she did indeed win. While her speech was one of the evening's best, it annoyed me that she was able to speak for five minutes without a peep from the crowd while the very intriguing Michael Haneke (The White Ribbon) started hearing the music about thirty seconds into his acceptance speech. In the drama category, Sandra Bullock (The Blind Side) was a surprise winner (at least for me), and she is certainly making a convincing case for being the current Oscar frontrunner.

The most puzzling victories of the evening certainly came from the Comedy/Musical section. Robert Downey Jr. took home Best Actor in a category where Matt Damon, Michael Stuhlbarg, and Joseph Gordon-Levitt gave pretty remarkable performances. Not to diminish the undeniable charm and talent of Downey, but it's a shame to see films like The Informant!, A Serious Man, and 500 Days of Summer be shut out for the entire night while Sherlock Holmes and The Hangover are running away with Globes. Out of the five nominees for Best Picture (Comedy/Musical), four of them are entirely forgettable, with 500 Days of Summer being the only exception. Fans of The Hangover can celebrate all they want, but the plain truth of the matter is that the entire category was a joke. 

In other, more predictable categories, longtime favorites Mo'Nique (Precious) and Christoph Waltz (Inglourious Basterds) won their respective supporting categories, and Up took home the Best Animated Feature Award, and perhaps silencing the thought of a Fantastic Mr. Fox upset at the Oscars as well. Up was also a winner in the Best Original Score category for Michael Giacchino's terrific work, and Ryan Bingham took home the Original Song Award for Crazy Heart's "The Weary Kind".

With a lot of people predicting Quentin Tarantino to win the screenplay category, I elected to go with Jason Reitman and Sheldon Turner for Up in the Air, and it ended up paying off. Both are brilliant scripts worthy of recognition (which they will both get at the Oscars), but on this night, I was glad to see Reitman up there on that stage. Like the aforementioned Martin Scorsese, Reitman is such an articulate, passionate speaker, and I will never get tired of hearing his voice.

The "big showdown" of this awards season seems to be the battle between ex-spouses James Cameron and Kathryn Bigelow, but on this night, Cameron was the clear-cut winner, taking home both Best Director and Best Picture (Drama). I predicted the latter myself, but I was stunned not to see Bigelow go home with the former. I still consider her the Oscar favorite, but my confidence in that has dwindled, and it seems that Avatar has cemented itself as the inevitable winner of the Best Picture Oscar.

That's all for now. Here is the full list of motion picture nominees and winners:

  • Avatar (WINNER)
  • The Hurt Locker
  • Inglourious Basterds
  • Precious
  • Up in the Air
  • Nine
  • It's Complicated
  • Julie & Julia
  • The Hangover (WINNER)
  • 500 Days of Summer
  • Jeff Bridges, Crazy Heart (WINNER)
  • George Clooney, Up in the Air
  • Colin Firth, A Single Man
  • Morgan Freeman, Invictus
  • Tobey Maguire, Brothers
  • Sandra Bullock, The Blind Side (WINNER)
  • Gabourey Sidibe, Precious
  • Helen Mirren, The Last Station
  • Carey Mulligan, An Education
  • Emily Blunt, The Young Victoria
  • Matt Damon, The Informant!
  • Daniel Day-Lewis, Nine
  • Joseph Gordon-Levitt, 500 Days of Summer
  • Michael Stuhlbarg, A Serious Man
  • Robert Downey Jr., Sherlock Holmes (WINNER)
  • Sandra Bullock, The Proposal
  • Marion Cotillard, Nine
  • Julia Roberts, Duplicity
  • Meryl Streep, It's Complicated
  • Meryl Streep, Julie & Julia (WINNER)
  • Matt Damon, Invictus
  • Woody Harrelson, The Messenger
  • Christopher Plummer, The Last Station
  • Stanley Tucci, The Lovely Bones
  • Christoph Waltz, Inglourious Basterds (WINNER)
  • Penelope Cruz, Nine
  • Vera Farmiga, Up in the Air
  • Anna Kendrick, Up in the Air
  • Mo'Nique, Precious (WINNER)
  • Julianne Moore, A Single Man
  • James Cameron, Avatar (WINNER)
  • Kathryn Bigelow, The Hurt Locker
  • Quentin Tarantino, Inglourious Basterds
  • Clint Eastwood, Invictus
  • Jason Reitman, Up in the Air
  • Coraline
  • Fantastic Mr. Fox
  • Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs
  • The Princess and the Frog
  • Up (WINNER)
  • Neill Blomkamp & Terri Tatchell, District 9
  • Nancy Meyers, It's Complicated
  • Mark Boal, The Hurt Locker
  • Quentin Tarantino, Inglourious Basterds
  • Jason Reitman & Sheldon Turner, Up in the Air (WINNER)
  • Broken Embraces
  • A Prophet
  • The Maid
  • The White Ribbon (WINNER)
  • Baaria
  • Michael Giacchino, Up (WINNER)
  • James Horner, Avatar
  • Marvin Hamlisch, The Informant!
  • Abel Korzeniowski, A Single Man
  • Karen O. & Carter Burwell, Where the Wild Things Are
  • "Cinema Italiano" from Nine
  • "I See You" from Avatar
  • "The Weary Kind" from Crazy Heart (WINNER)
  • "I Want to Come Home" from Everybody's Fine
  • "Winter" from Brothers

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